In an exclusive video interview, HCI editor Sarah Clarke spoke to Dominique Kent, co-founder of the Live-in Care Hub, managing director of the Good Care Group and chair of the United Kingdom Home Care Association.
She discusses a campaign to recruit 21,000 more care workers to the sector amid the coronavirus crisis and says the Hub, and the 21 live-in care providers within it, are ready to “step up” and create capacity planning for NHS discharge teams in order to get people home from hospital safely.
Kent and her peers are working hard to convince NHS trusts that live-in care is a safer alternative to discharging people into a care home and mitigates the risk of COVID-19 cross-transmission between residents.
“This service really is a no-brainer,” she says. “If we could try and get one trust who is willing to try and work with us, I think we can prove the concept quickly. The challenge we’ve always had with live-in care is that it’s not particularly well known. If it’s ever going to step up and be part of the solution, the time is now.”
Kent also talks about the live-in carers working for the Good Care Group – all of whom are isolating with their clients during the lockdown to keep them safe – and how they are coping.
And as UKHCA chair, she discusses the “poor and confusing guidance” regarding the use of PPE.
“Whilst it’s understandable that the NHS takes priority, why is it fair that we ask our social care workforce to operate without adequate protection and clear guidance?,” she says.
Kent explains that the UKHCA is trying to influence clarity around the guidance, and is pushing the government and local authorities to make the right decisions when it comes to supporting social care providers to ensure they can cope with the financial impact of COVID-19.